About the Game's Author
Gaming Credentials: The author of Assassin Contracts has been playing D&D since 1974. He was the founder of WmFROG (Washington Fantasy Role Gamers); he was the convention manager of EastCon and the assistant convention manager and trouble shooter of many other conventions. He has created and run many D&D tournaments, entered and won several D&D games. His article, "In the Interest of Fairness", on how to determine/judge winners of D&D tournaments and was published in the May 1981 issue of Dragon Magazine. He created the Grenadier Visual Dungeon which ran at many conventions, including GenCon.
Other Credentials: He has a Ph.D. & M.S. in physics, a B.S. in Mathematics, & a Lifetime Achievement Award in Engineering. He is a member of Mensa, and President Emeritus of the Washington Academy of Sciences. He fences and is an authorized referee in all three weapons -- foil, epee, and saber. He is also a member of SAM (Society of American Magicians, President Emeritus Assembly 23), IBM (International Brotherhood of Magicians), He is the author of the upcoming novel Dark Angelfall, about Cas, Ancestor of the Assassins Guild.
Artwork: The artwork for the game is created by Betsy Riley from character profiles provided by the game's author. To see more of her artwork, vist her website BetsyRiley.com.
Assassin Contracts is set in a quasi-medieval world organized in Guilds. Most events take place in a City-State with heavy taxes. There is a Civil Patrol that mainly responds to disturbances. The Assassin's Guild is the only recourse for those not rich enough to afford their own standing army. The assassin is the equalizer, the one unstoppable avenger that all fear.
Players may select from a collection of pre-defined player characters to save time on set up. A player then accepts a contract from the Assassin's Guild as the basis for game play. The contract may be a hit or a protection detail of some sort. Outcomes are determined by dice rolls and tables, similar to AD&D games.
In addition to Humans, the primary races are Dwarves, Elves, Gnomes, Half-Elves, and Half-Orcs. The Guild will provide a small dossier on the target, listing known defenses and weapons, the charges against the target (reason for the contract), and a location where the target may be found. Note: The dossiers may be both incomplete and inaccurate.
In addition to edged weapons like swords and knives, striking weapons like clubs, and projectile weapons like bows, the assassin may encounter magical objects and spells that affect battle outcomes. Shields, various types of armor, and chainmail may be used by target characters. Some may also have a companion animal.
Several assassin characters have been pre-defined. They are from Human, Halfling, Elf, Dwarf, Half-Elf, Half-Orc, and Gnome races. Player characters are allowed a sword, shield, and knives, but no armor other than studded leather clothing. Players are considered to be provisional members of the Assassin's Guild. All the player characters have names starting with "J".Pre-defined Characters